Rocket scientist honored by Austin College
SHERMAN, Texas (KTEN) — From baking cookies to working for NASA, Sylvia Acevedo has achieved a lot since her days as a Girl Scout.
"Whatever it is that drives you, stay focused and try to be your best," she said.
When Acevedo got involved with Girl Scouts in New Mexico as a child, she set her dreams on the stars above.
"I was earning my Science Badge making a rocket, and I failed a lot of times," she said. "It took me six times, and I finally got the rocket to pierce through the beautiful blue New Mexico sky, and I thought, 'I can do this!'"
Acevedo's college degree and love for science, technology, engineering and mathematics landed her a job as a rocket scientist for NASA.
"Working in NASA was a really exciting time, because the Voyager 2 was going by Jupiter, and that's sort of like Christmas," she said. "That's a major holiday when a spacecraft is going by a planet."
Acevedo refused to let anything or anyone get in the way of her dreams.
"If you've ever seen the movie Hidden Figures, they had a hard time to find a bathroom," she said. "My very first job, there weren't any bathrooms at all. I didn't let that faze me; I brought in a bike and at my breaks, I would ride to the nearest ladies bathroom."
On Thursday, Austin College presented Acevedo with the 2023 Posey Leadership Award for excellence.
Her high achievements serve as an inspiration for others... that they, too, can reach for the stars.
"She emphasizes servant leadership, serving others and not being afraid of the unknown, adventuring into something unexpected, taking risks, and getting out of your comfort zones," said Austin College junior Nick Estes.